Rare’s next big Xbox console exclusive, Everwild, has reportedly been “completely rebooted.” Sources close with VGC spoke on why the nature fantasy game didn’t show up during Microsoft’s E3 2021 press conference yesterday, and though Rare hasn’t been shy to show its progress at past events, it seems it could be quite some time before we get another update on Everwild.
A change in course apparently comes as a result of the departure of Creative Director Simon Woodroffe, who left the project last year. Rare veteran Gregg Mayles is now serving as his replacement, and Everwild has reportedly “restarted from scratch,” with the team “optimistically” planning to launch in 2024. VentureBeat reporter Jeff Grubb corroborated the report on Twitter.
Everwild executive producer Louise O’Connor offered the following, among other statements, to VGC about the leadership and development shifts: “Gregg Mayles joined us, late last year as Creative Director, and the team has never been stronger. Since showing the world our Eternals trailer, we have been making progress on all aspects of Everwild. The team continues to work hard to realise our vision and to bring the magic of nature in Everwild to life for players around the world.”
The game was reportedly shaping up to be a “third-person adventure with god game elements” last year. However, Rare leadership reportedly mandated that there be no combat in the game, which caused complications in the design. It is unclear how many of the aforementioned features (or lack thereof) will remain as development continues.
Rare announced Everwild in 2019, revealing an early-stage new IP focused on the interaction between players and nature. A director’s commentary video last year gave us more information about the gameplay itself, including Eternals, the game world, and more. Meanwhile, Rare has been busy fleshing out the content offerings in its pirate simulator, Sea of Thieves. As part of E3 2021 yesterday, the company announced perhaps the game’s most substantial update yet, which features a tie-in with Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean.